Monday, June 30, 2008

eBay Getting Sued In Paris Court

French court to rule in luxury group case against eBay

EBay is getting sued for 80 million dollars for allowing the sales and auctioning of counterfeit designer goods. While I believe counterfeit sales should have penalties, they're also getting complaints for allowing sellers to resell items such as designer perfumes: "...when eBay sells their authentic products, it is doing so illegally because the companies only permit their goods to be sold through specialist dealers". In other words, what you buy isn't really yours to sell.

"The "first sale" doctrine in copyright law, however, makes it clear that once the copyright owner sells or gives away a CD, DVD, or book, the recipient is entitled to resell it without needing further permission." Read more: Courtroom Showdown for eBay Seller Over Promo CD Sales, EFF Argues That Labels Don't Trump Right to Resell, April 8th, 2008

Next thing you know, they'll be coming after bloggers saying we shouldn't write about designer perfumes if we're not authorized to speak on behalf of the companies. Maybe we shouldn't own our own thoughts, either.

(Update: eBay has been fined 63 million dollars and can no longer allow sales of perfumes by Christian Dior, Kenzo, Givenchy and Guerlain, all LVMH brands. More at this link)

France's Problem is a Statist-Run Socialist Economy By Lawrence Kudlow, March 27, 2006

Visit osCommerce forum to read a discussion on whether you can get sued for selling brand items

Update July 9, 2008: eBay scrambles to reverse loss in LVMH case,